Collective portrait

incl. materials
45 min.


  • The learner can introduce him/herself in a creative way.
  • The learner can ask questions about someone’s identity.


  • Paper and pen
  • Tables


Present yourself with a simple portrait you drew of yourself in order to explain the exercise and to emphasize that the exercise is not about drawing skills.


  • Form groups of at least four people.
  • Give each learner a pen and a paper.
  • Ask the learners to write the first name of the person to their left.
  • Give the learners a minute to start drawing a portrait of that person.
  • When you say STOP, the learners pass their drawing to the learner on the right. Everybody has now a paper with a first name and the beginning of a portrait.
  • The learners continue drawing for a minute, till you say STOP.
  • Continue till the learners get back the paper with their name on and the collective portrait.
  • Let each learner present his/her portrait.


  • Let the learners complete their portrait with symbols and images that say something about them, e.g. a bike because you like cycling, a flower if you like nature…
  • Let the learners explain what they have added and why.

Closing up

  • Beginners: Teach and repeat sentences and questions about appearance
    and identity, e.g. I wear glasses. What is your favourite food? What do you like to do in your free time?…
  • Organize an ‘exhibition’: hang the portraits on the wall. Give the learners time to comment and ask each other questions.
  • You can talk about diversity. Although a group may consist of only one nationality, the portraits, the added symbols, and images will be different.

Tips for the instructor

There is no need to divide the group if it is a small one.